Researchers at Buddhist Tzu Chi General Hospital in Taiwan studied 57,972 cataract patients who were matched to 57,972 healthy controls for the study.Individuals with and without cataracts were matched 1:1 for age, sex, and index year. Those with cataracts were further divided into cataract surgery and no surgery groups.
During an average follow-up time of 6.4 years, 17,450 patients developed osteoporosis or fractures in the cataract group, and 12,627 in the non-cataract group. The diagnosis of cataracts was associated with a 29% increased risk of developing osteoporosis or fracture. In analyses for each individual event, the diagnosis of cataracts was associated with a 43% increased risk of osteoporosis, a 16% increased risk of hip fracture, a 25% increased risk of vertebral fracture, and a 24% increased risk of other fractures. In the cataract group, patients who underwent cataract surgery had a 42% lower risk of developing osteoporosis or fracture.
The investigators concluded that cataract was independently associated with increased risks of osteoporosis and fracture. There might be an association between cataract surgery and lower risks of osteoporosis and fracture.
“Appropriate management of cataracts may decrease osteoporosis and fracture risks,” said first author Dr. Huei-Kai Huang. “I strongly recommend all elders with osteoporosis or fractures to check their vision,” added co-author Dr. Ching-Hui Loh.
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